Olofsson SE, Nodin B, Gaber A, Eberhard J, Uhlén M, Jirström K, Jerkeman M
PLoS ONE 10 (3) e0121300 [2015-03-26; online 2015-03-26]
Expression of the RNA-binding motif protein 3 (RBM3) has been shown to correlate with favourable clinicopathological parameters and prognosis in several cancer diseases. The aim of this study was to examine the expression and prognostic ability of RBM3 in patients with testicular non-seminomatous germ cell tumours (NSGCT). Immunohistochemical RBM3 expression was analysed in tissue microarrays with tumours from 206 patients. Chi-square test was applied to analyze associations between RBM3 expression and clinicopathological parameters. Kaplan-Meier analysis was used to assess the impact of RBM3 expression on cancer-specific survival (CSS) and failure-free survival (FFS). Cox regression proportional hazards models were used to estimate the relative risk for failure. In the entire cohort, there was a significant association between clinical stage (p=0.044) and RBM3 expression. Weak RBM3 expression correlated with a significantly reduced FFS [79.3% versus 90.4% (p=0.019)] and CSS [87.5% versus 97.3% (p=0.047)]. For patients with metastatic disease (n = 88), significant associations were found between RBM3 expression and IGCCC group (p=0.007). The FFS was significantly inferior for patients with low tumour-specific RBM3 expression [59.3% versus 79.0% (p=0.013)], and this association remained significant in a multivariable model for patients with metastatic disease (HR=3.67; 95% CI 1.14, 11.89). Low RBM3 expression is an independent predictor of treatment failure in metastatic NSGCT, in relation to the prognostic factors included in the International Germ Cell Consensus Classification (IGCCC). These findings suggest that RBM3 may be a potential biomarker for treatment stratification in patients with metastatic non-seminomatous germ cell tumours, and therefore merit further validation.